Outside of one lopsided effort against the Marlins on Friday, the pitching staff managed to keep the Mets in every game this week. They were also the victims of some bad defense behind them, making for some ill timed unearned runs. The progress that Steven Matz and Zack Wheeler have made this season continues to be an under the radar bright spot in 2018.
It seems perhaps unfair that a quality start from Jacob deGrom earned him the side arrow, but not much has been fair for deGrom this season. And it is true that he is graded on a somewhat different curve. He had been cruising and looking like his dominant self in Saturday’s start until he tired in the sixth inning and made a mistake to Brian Anderson, which Anderson did not miss. It was enough to earn him the loss.
Steven Matz started the only two games the Mets won this week. He took another big step forward yesterday and earned himself the win for giving up just one run in 5 1⁄3 innings of work. The Mets committed three errors—one by Matz himself—but unlike times in the past, Matz did not let that rattle him and limited the damage. He also pitched well in Tuesday’s walk-off win, giving up three runs over seven innings of work.
Seth Lugo, now back in the bullpen, earned the hold in relief of Matz yesterday, pitching 1 2⁄3 scoreless innings. This came off of a tough luck loss on Monday in which Lugo was the victim of two unearned runs.
Tim Peterson, who has distinguished himself well since being called up, surrendered a solo home run in the eighth inning of yesterday’s game, which was the only blemish on his record for the week. He pitched a scoreless tenth inning in Tuesday’s extra-inning victory, earning the win, and 2⁄3 of an inning on Wednesday.
Jeurys Familia earned the save yesterday and looked much more like himself after a complete meltdown on Wednesday in which he didn’t retire a batter. All of the runners he put on base would come around to score, tagging him with four earned runs in the outing. However, he kept the Mets in the game on Tuesday, throwing 1 2⁄3 scoreless innings.
The Pirates’ four-run ninth inning on Wednesday spoiled a fantastic start from Zack Wheeler, in which he tossed seven scoreless innings, scattering five hits and striking out seven while only walking one batter.
After Familia failed to retire a batter, Anthony Swarzak came in to try to put out the fire and was unsuccessful, allowing all of his inherited runners to score. However, those runs were charged for Familia’s ledger rather than Swarzak’s. Swarzak pitched a scoreless inning in relief of deGrom on Saturday and contributed 1⁄3 of an inning to Tuesday’s win.
Corey Oswalt was forced into emergency service on Friday after deGrom’s start was pushed back a day. Things did not go well for Oswalt, unfortunately. He gave up six runs on six hits in 2 2⁄3 innings, walking two and striking out one.
Chris Beck finished the third inning for Oswalt, retiring the only batter he faced, which amounted to his entire workload for the week.
Tyler Bashlor, fresh up from Double-A, shouldered most of the relief effort after Oswalt’s early exit. He allowed one run on three hits in 2 2⁄3 innings of relief. He gave up a two run homer to Josh Bell in his second inning of work on Monday in relief of Lugo, ending his major league debut on a low note. But the Mets have to like what they’ve seen from him so far overall.
Jerry Blevins had a bounce back week, following Bashlor with 1 1⁄3 scoreless innings on Friday. It was his only appearance for the week.
Drew Smith also logged his only inning of the week in the eighth inning on Friday. He gave up a run, but the game was already well out of reach at that stage.